Recently we received a question about one of the core principles listed on our crowdfunding campaign: floating is for everyone. Nationally, floating averages $50-$100 per hour, and we’re going to stay on the low end of that even as we’re in one of the most expensive cost-of-living markets in the country, but as our reader rightly points out, $50 is too much when you’re struggling to survive. How can we say our service is for “everyone” when not everyone can scrape together fifty bucks? My answer touched on some of the reasons I (Sara) do what I do, and how I arrived at this point. I thought some of you might be interested in where I’m coming from.
It was a simple idea.
Give artists two free floats, with the understanding that they would begin a new piece of art right after the second float, and finish it within a month.
An anonymous comment to our survey pointed out that two (of the four) pictures we’ve posted so far include skinny white women in bikinis, and that no one else is represented. This is totally fair enough, and we’re embarrassed to have given that impression — we were focused on picking the pictures that gave the best views of the tanks, and didn’t pay enough attention to other messages that might be present. We don’t yet have our own tanks, so we’re at the mercy of stock photography here.
It’s particularly unfortunate because it’s not at all representative of the floating clientele. One of the things I’ve been most impressed with in the various centers we’ve visited and at the conference we just got home from is the tremendous diversity of people present. I love the way that tanks can make relaxation and spiritual experiences seem welcoming to everyone, including all the people (such as myself) who feel out of place at traditional spas and yoga studios. Male and female, young and old, hippies and hipsters, introverts and people with ADHD, salesmen in business suits and upright middle-American church types are all here. Tanks are popular with heavily pregnant women, with frequent travellers getting over jet lag, with professional athletes, and with people with chronic back pain and mobility issues. Joe Rogan talking about tanks has even got his following of mixed-martial arts fans into it: “If you have an aversion to drugs…you can have very introspective psychedelic experiences naturally in the tank. Everybody should be doing it!”
Once you’re in a tank, you’re alone with yourself, in pitch dark. What you look like could hardly matter less.